An extraordinary collection of photographs
Fishing Baja 2000
Fishing the Sea of Cortez off Cerralvo Island
The Year of 1960 (I was 33 years old)
What was happening in the world:
- US spy plane (U-2) is shot down over Russia and its pilot (Gary Powers) is given 10 years in prison.
- Israelis capture Adolf Eichmann (SS Director of Nazi Death Camps) and return him to Israel for trial.
What was happening in the USA:
- Kennedy defeats Nixon to become President.
- Melvin Purvis, former FBI agent, is a suicide at age 56.
- Gunsmoke is the Top TV Show.
What was happening in California:
- Caryl Chessman is executed after 10 years on death row.
- Clark Gable is dead of a heart attack at age 59.
- After 2 mistrials, Raymond Finch and Carole Tregoff are sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Barbara Finch. Tregoff was Mr. Finch's secretary.
What was happening in sports:
- In the Rose Bowl, it was Washington 44 - Wisconsin 8.
- In the World Series, it was Pittsburgh over the Yankees 4 games to 3. Casey Stengel is fired for the loss.
- In the NFL championship game, it was Philadelphia 17 - Green Bay 13.
- NFL Player of the Year was Norm Van Brocklin of Philadelphia.
- The Heisman Trophy went to Joe Bellino of Navy.
- The national champion of College Football was Minnesota.
The national champion of College Basketball was Ohio State.
- The NBA champion was Boston Celtics for the 2nd straight year.
What was happening at the movies:
- Best movie was Exodus.
- Best actor was Burt Lancaster in Elmer Gentry.
- Best actress was Elizabeth Taylor in Butterfield 8.
Other great movies were:
- Psycho (Tony Perkins),
- Spartacus (Kirk Douglas), and
- The Alamo (John Wayne).
Memorable songs were:
- Sleepy Lagoon,
- Foggy Day in London Town, and
- I’m heading for the last round-trip.
What was happening in my life:
- On a cold morning in early January, I headed the old red Plymouth south on Highway 99 back to the LA basin. It was loaded to the "gills" with all my belongings, and I was about to make a major change. I had gotten an educational leave of absence from my job as Delineator, and I was on my way to a new way of life.
- By noon of the following day, I was relocated in a small bachelor's bungalow in the small suburban town of Monterey Park just east of downtown LA. In addition to mine, there were 3 other bungalow apartments located in a row behind a residence on North Sierra Vista. As a full-time student, I was very busy in the time I lived there, and I never got to know any of the other tenants. However, there was an older guy living in the apartment next to me who died of a ruptured aorta one Sunday afternoon. I heard him moaning through the wall and I called the landlady, but it was too late.
- About a week after I had relocated in Monterey Park, Mary and I were married at her family church in Buena Park. It was a big church affair with a big reception afterward. For me (a guy who likes to stay over in the corner out of the lime-light) it was a long nerve-wracking affair and I was glad when it was over. My younger brother Tom, Ma, and Dad drove down for the wedding. Pat (my oldest sister) and Bob also came up from San Diego. I only had time to say hello and goodbye before I was married and off on the honeymoon. Mary and I went on an overnight trip to Lake Arrowhead for the honeymoon. It was very "wintry" there in mid-January, and from our in-town motel window we had a very snowy scene to look out on.
- There was no doubt that Mary was still a virgin, in fact we had some problems consummating the marriage. She had a small green English-made Ford and we drove her car on the trip. It appeared that our marriage was off to a good start, and all was going well. During the 20 months I lived in Monterey Park, Mary and I went on three other overnight trips:
- In June of 1960 we made an all-day visit to Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, then drove on to Lake Elsinore where we stayed overnight. I remember the "staged" train robbery and the fried-chicken dinner at Knotts.
- In September of 1960, we went to the L.A. County Fair in Pomona and then drove on to Mt. Baldy and stayed overnight. We panned for gold at the fair and had a baked ham dinner at the Crystal Cafeteria on Holt Avenue in Pomona. Little did I know that 7 years later I'd be back in Pomona under very different circumstances.
- In May of 1961, we took an overnight trip to Porterville to visit at the Orange Farm of family friends who once grew oranges in Buena Park.
- Almost from the start of the marriage, I had trouble with Mary's older sister Blanche. She was the overbearing kind and she had a lot of influence with Mary. She tried the same with me and there was trouble. Two examples: She was a "devout" catholic, and she went out of her way to inform me that even though I had become a catholic, my mother was not a catholic and thus she could not go to heaven when she died. She also counted the months, and began to ask why Mary was not yet "with child". She was a real "Christian".
- Despite the influences of Blanche, life with Mary in most of 1960 was very nice. I was working very hard on my courses at L.A. State during the week, then on weekends; either I would drive down and stay with Mary in Buena Park, or she would drive up and stay with me in Monterey Park. She was working as a waitress in the local hospital. I remember driving down to Buena Park in the spring when the whole of Orange County smelled like "heaven" from orange blossoms.
- In the spring semester at L.A. State, I signed up for 3 classes - 2 of them were the most difficult I had to pass to earn my B.A. Degree in Zoology. They were Math 100 and Physics 101. From my experience in high school with these two subjects, I knew it would be a struggle for me at the college level. I had decided on the degree in Zoology for two reasons: (1) to help my chances of becoming some kind of a biological illustrator; and if not, then (2) to get a job as a biologist working for the State of California.
- Zoology 100 was my 1st course in my major. The instructor was a nice old guy named Lowery. He was a PhD zoologist specializing in Arachnids (spiders). I liked both him and his class, and the most important event of my studies at L.A. State occurred in his class. He took us on a class field trip to Point Fermin at low tide. It was my first look at the fascinating tidal invertebrates of the California coast. I was to spend the next 20 years of my life working with these amazing "critters". I got an A in his class.
- From the start, I knew I had to use all the ability I had to pass the tests I must pass if I was to earn this degree. So, early in the game I devised a system of organizing "test" data on a framework like the trunk-limbs-branches of a tree. By visualizing first letters of keywords on this organized framework, I was able to construct a memory-system that permitted me to retrieve an amazing amount of information during the "pressure-periods" of a test. It served me well in my college work.
- Also from the start, it was obvious I would have two main competitors in shooting for the highest grade - this was always my primary goal. My 1st competitor was a tall young guy with dark hair and a mustache named Chuck. He was very intelligent and he often (but not always) beat me out for the top grade. My 2nd competitor was a cute little snooty blonde who also gave me much competition. Her name was Linda. Like me, both Linda and Chuck were Zoology majors. In many of my Biology classes, I also had much competition from pre-med majors who were always out for the best grades.
- My apartment in Monterey Park was about a 20-minute drive from L.A. State, and I can still remember the many drives north on Garfield, then west on Valley Blvd. to the school. I parked on Valley Blvd. and walked to the Campus.
- Like most of my Zoology courses, Zoology 100 had both a lecture part and a lab part. Most of the lab part was spent dissecting and identifying the anatomy of a Bullfrog. Math 100 was a very difficult course for me. It involved college-level math that was pretty much beyond me like Inequalities, Matrices, Complex Numbers, and Determinants. The instructor was a nice guy and I did my best, but I was going under up to the last part of the course when we suddenly we got into Trigonometry.
- I had some background here and I was able to pull a B out of the course – much to my surprise.
- Physics 101 was another real struggle for me. The instructor was a tough old gal named Stahl, and despite the severity of the subject I liked her. Through a maze of confusing problems involving Levers, Pulleys, Inclines, Momentum, and Forces -I somehow came out of it with a B.
- In the summer session of 1960, I attended two 6-week summer sessions. I had approximately $3,000 of life savings to put myself through the 20-months at Monterey Park, and the only way I was going to make it was to really hustle to pass the courses I had to pass to get my degree.
- At the L.A. state summer session, I took the following courses:
- Genetics – It was a tough course taught by a tough young PhD named Matoni. He had high standards and didn't give many A's. It was my first exposure to Genetics and I found it very interesting. However, I didn't do well at all. Of the 11 students in the class, only Chuck got an A. He gave no Bs; he gave 6 Cs, 1 D, and 3 Fs. (I got one of the Cs).
- Evolution - Much to my regret, Matoni was also the instructor in this course.
- He taught it much like the Genetics course. Once again, it was a very interesting course but I ended up with another C.
- At the 2nd summer session, I took the following courses at Pasadena City College. It was about a 40-minute drive from my apartment in Monterey Park. I remember the drive north through San Marino, then west on Colorado Blvd. (where they have the big Rose Bowl parade every January 1st).
- Psychology 1A - It was taught by a nice old guy named Howell. He gave each student in the class a psychological test and then analyzed the results. He advised me to avoid jobs where I had to deal with "people". I got an A.
- European History - It was taught by a young guy who I think was Greek. It was an interesting class and I did well on the exams, but I didn't participate much in the class discussions. One day, he was showing a movie of European peasant people, and the class laughed at some of their ways. The instructor got very upset about this. I got an A.
- In the Fall Semester of 1960, I took 4 courses and 2 of them were very competitive. Comparative Anatomy – It was the toughest because, in addition to competition from Chuck and Linda, almost half of the class was made up of pre-med majors all out for the top grades. To make things even worse, the instructor was an arrogant PhD just out of UCLA who didn't like to give A's to lowly State College students. Her name was Vance and she was a real jerk. We all got a good look at her "level" of maturity during a lecture she gave on copulation in sharks - her obvious embarrassment over the subject was a joke to watch.
- Throughout the course, Linda and a cute pre-med major were #1 and #2 on all of the exams. But on the final exam, I took my embalmed Shark and Cat home over the Xmas break and really worked on them. On the final lab exam, I got a 90 and it was the HIGHEST GRADE IN THE CLASS. It was a real accomplishment for me. I ended up with a B in the class. A couple of weeks later, Vance called me into her office and offered me the job of correcting her exams for the next semester. This "honor" always went to the top student from the previous semester. With all my course work, I didn't really have time to do it, and she got offended when I turned down the opportunity.
- Another thing I remember about this class was one of the pre-med students who asked me if she could come to my apartment and study with me before the exams. She was a good-looking redhead. I told Mary about it, and she didn't like the idea at all - I thought that was funny.
- Marine Zoology – It was another tough course. It was taught by another arrogant PhD, this one from Stanford. By far the most important thing about this course was that the class text was Between Pacific Tides It was to be the most important book I would read in my life. It created the birth of a dream that I would live with for the next 20 years of my life, and culminate in the publication of my own book intertidal invertebrates as the best illustrated text on the tidal animals of California. The instructor was named Welsh and I got a B in the course. The class was built around 3 major field trips:
- Field Trip #1 was to Corona Del Mar, a magnificent rocky shoreline at low tide. Three of the more conspicuous species we collected here were:
- The Ghost Shrimp Callianassa (with its commensal Blind Goby Typhlogobius).
- The Chiton Stenoplax conspicua.
- The Keyhole Limpet Megathura.
- Field Trip #2 was to Goleta, an exposed gravelly beach. Four prominent species we collected here were:
- Cypraea the Chestnut Cowrie.
- The Chama Oyster.
- Ophioderma panamense - a tropical Brittlestar.
- The Nassarius Snail in a cluster of its eggs.
- Field Trip #3 was to Newport Bay, then a spectacular place to collect mudflat species. Three distinctive species we collected there were:
- Uca the Fiddler Crab. Its mounded burrows were everywhere.
- The Green Grass Shrimp - we netted these in beds of Zostera.
- The Mudflat Octopus - its egg-capsules were common.
- Conservation of Wildlife was for me a much easier class - it was taught by a PhD named Hanson from Utah State. The class text was Web of Life, and I got an A.
- Botany 100 was my fourth class of the fall semester. It was taught by a young guy named Sacher. It wasn’t a hard course, but I could only get a B from him.
- In general, things were going pretty well for me in 1960, both at school and in my marriage. The competition at school was fierce at times, and I was having problems with Mary's sister, but things could be worse.
- As a "religious" student of the sciences, I was still wondering about things like:
- Is the how of science as important as the why of religion?
- As to life and creation, can there be complex design without a designer?
- The label "instinct" appears to be a manmade term applied to vast unknown phenomena – as in the instinctive behavior of migratory animals.
- It would appear that every person has a price but it may or may not be money.
< ---- What was happening in 1959
My short marriage to Mary
There was no doubt that she was still a virgin, and we had trouble consummating the marriage.
Knott's Berry Farm
One of three trips I made with my wife Mary. It was an all-day visit.
Heading to Lake Arrowhead for our honeymoon
We headed north on Highway 18 for our honeymoon at Lake Arrowhead in the San Bernardino Mountains.
Cal State Los Angeles
The Biological Sciences building where I spent many hours.
Crystal Cafeteria on Holt Avenue
Mary and I stopped here after visiting the L.A. County Fair in Pomona.
Orange Orchard in Porterville
Mary and I visited friends of her family here.
Drawing from Zoology class
We dissected bullfrogs.
A drawing from my Comparative Anatomy class
We dissected sharks in this course.
Notes from Marine Biology
In the late 1970s, I would draw 761 marine animals for a book called Intertidal Invertebrates of California. more information
Point Fermin on the California Coast
It was the first time in my life that I saw a tidepool. Little did I know that I would end-up studying tidepools for several years throughout my life.
Corona Del Mar
A magnificent place at low tide.
With a cluster of its egg capsules.
Eggs of the Mudflat Octopus
These embryonic egg capsules were very abuntant in 1960.
Mudflat at Newport Bay
Covered with a thick blanket of Zostera.
A gravelly beach at Goleta
Another great place at low tide.
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